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Vindhya Bachao's Representation to MoEF- September 2013


In a recent operation by Vindhyan Ecology and Natural History Foundation (VENHF) popularly known as Vindhya Bachao, many sensitive facts were disclosed. In a report sent to Experts Appraisal Committee (EAC) of Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF) by the foundation on September 17th, 2013, it is revealed that the company allegedly tried to mislead the general public by not putting the real facts in its EIA report i.e. Environmental Impact Assessment Report. EIA process is a mandatory requirement for getting any projects as listed under EIA Notification, 2006 approved from Central Government. The site inspection is prepared by a group of scientists and journalists on September 15th, 2013 which is supported by few more informations obtained under Right to Information. The environmental clearance of the project was once deferred by the EAC  on the ground of conflict of interest in water utilization and no firm coal linkage in its March, 2013 meeting. The project was again listed in EAC agenda for 18-19th September, but surprisingly removed from the list in next 2 days for some unknown reasons. Following is the representation sent by Vindhya Bachao:
 
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To,

Director,

Ministry of Environment and Forests

Government of India

 

[Attachment: Site Inspection Report of the proposed power plant]

Dear Sir/Madam,

This is to bring the notice of the Experts Appraisal Committee, Coal and Thermal Power Projects of Ministry of Environment and Forests that the factors considered in selecting the location of proposed thermal power plant by Welspun Energy UP Pvt Ltd at village Dadri Khurd is false and misleading. The proposed project will have immense impact on ecology, wildlife, water resource and human health. We have arrived at this finding based on our research as well as a site inspection visit conducted by our expert team comprising of faculty members of the Banaras Hindu University, journalists and our own members on 15th September, 2013.

In the course of the site inspection, we found that there are serious discrepancies between ground reality and the facts mentioned in the EIA report. For instance, a road is declared as common road in the EIA report is in reality a forest road owned by Forest Department, as is evident from the signboard put up there. Further, the entire project area was found to be good forest area, and a habitat of several protected animals like Sloth Bear, Swamp Deer, Mugger Crocodile, Bengal Monitor, Chinkara and Peafowl which are Scheduled I species according to Wildlife Protection Act, 1972. Several other important facts like importance of Upper Khajuri Dam, presence of Khajuri river, Wyndham fall and most importantly, the Banaras Hindu University Campus nearby do not find any mention the EIA report submitted to the MoEF. These, among others, are some of the critical issues which are ignored by the project proponent. We have highlighted most of them in our report.

We have prepared a Report outlining the findings and observations of our experts with supporting photographic evidence. We are attaching the same with this letter as a Report for your information and necessary action. We believe that the findings of this Report will persuade the EAC that the EIA Report prepared by the project proponent is misleading and false, and that the thermal power plant in the proposed site would have serious and irretrievable impacts on the wildlife, water resource, human health, environment and ecology of the area.  

We strongly recommend that for the reasons outlined above, the project should not be granted Environmental Clearance and strict actions should be taken against the project proponent for such blatant misrepresentation.

 

P.S.: The previous version of Site Inspection Report with issues outlined above was sent via email to EAC members Dr. C.R. Babu, Shri J.L. Mehta and Shri T.K. Dhar on 17th September, 2013
 

CC to: Secretary, Union Ministry of Environment and Forests

 

Thanking you



{edocs}Site_Inspection_Report_Welspun_TPP.pdf{/edocs}

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To Download the Final EIA Report of the project and other documents related to Welspun Energy U.P. Pvt Ltd.  Click Here

Tags: Welspun Energy, Coal & Thermal Power, Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, Forest, Ganges, Reviews & Critiques, Representations, Dams & Barrages, Uttar Pradesh

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